There was a time when I tried to determine the “best” musical performances I had ever seen. More recently, I have espoused a theory I call “As Good As It Gets.” Or you might call it “It Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This.” In the past couple of years, I have seen dozens of shows where the music, perhaps for a part, sometimes for the entire set, is simply, IN THE MOMENT, as good as it gets. I suspect this happens for most music lovers, regardless of their tastes.
Which brings us to the Lee Boys at Skipper’s Smokehouse (November 23rd). Just back from two weeks on the road opening for Gov’t Mule, the Lee Boys are holding CD release parties for their superb new disk “Testify.” So, of course, they open up with a new song not on the CD, “Early in the Morning!” By the time they segued into “Going to Glory,” things were ridiculously out of control. Roosevelt Collier was stratospheric all night, and the Lee Boys, exhorted by Derrick Lee in his dual vocalist/cheerleader role, kept blasting toward the heavens.
The only sad note was that vocalist Keith Lee took ill and had to leave. We certainly wish him a speedy recovery.
In addition to tunes from “Testify,” several other new tunes (well, new to me) were unveiled, each one drawing great crowd approval. If I had to select a highlight, it was the tune “Sinnerman,” which segues into an incredible funk workout based on Stevie Wonder’s “I Wish.” Add to that the vamp that occurs as “Dance with Me” transitions into a rave-up.
And a shout-out to Ted Lukas and the Misled, whose opening set was excellent! Be sure to check them out as well.
One other sad note: No tapers were there, and I kicked myself again for not investing in the equipment to preserve such outings.
Fair warning, Orlando: the Lee Boys are coming for you tonight at the Plaza Theatre! (Saturday, November 24th)